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I've been using the Stack group of web sites for about a year. There are some areas I still do not understand about how the community works. I had a question migrated from stackexchange to superuser which set me on a strange "waste of my time" (1+ hrs) which compelled me to post this question...

  1. I've ended up with several user accounts (stackoverflow, superuser, mathematics, drupal, etc...). Are these accounts intentionally separate? Or is this an error on my part?

  2. I think its not my error since at superuser I had to add a new user account, when I was already logged in at stackexchange (when I clicked through on my migrated question).

  3. The migrated question is not listed in my new account profile, and back at my stackexchange user account the question is listed in my profile, but registers no answers, while there are actually two in the migrated version. The net result of all this is I am unable to mark the question answered since my migrated question has no outlined checkmark. How do I mark my migrated question answered?

I've let my puzzlement about the Exchange go unresolved for the last year since all of my questions were at Stackoverflow and I continued to benefit with answers to my questions. Yet, having branched out into other parts of the "Exchange", and now seeing I have several accounts with different reputations, I'm confused and wish to better understand how the community of "Exchange" sites works.

I keep returning to the FAQ. I notice now each FAQ is written for the Exchange site where the FAQ link resides. None mention directly the issue (1) of the relationship of users to Exchange sites.

The FAQ also does not list, link or mention instructions to mark a question as "answered". A basic search for "marked as answered" returned:

"Mark the conclusion for every answered question" - "We already have tons of instances where users don't even know how to accept an answer..." haha, me!

"Is it possible for someone with high reputation to mark as answered? [closed]" Forwards to: How does accepting an answer work?

The latter seems IMHO a great candidate to be added to any Exchange FAQ.

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migrated from stackoverflow.com Jun 8 '11 at 17:58

This question came from our site for professional and enthusiast programmers.

9  
Erm... the FAQ does in fact give you full instructions on how to mark a question as answered. "When you have decided which answer is the most helpful to you, mark it as the accepted answer by clicking on the check box outline to the left of the answer." - fourth paragraph of the "How do I ask questions here?" section of every FAQ. Reading the FAQ all the way through would probably work better than a basic search. –  Grace Note Jun 8 '11 at 18:08
    
In addition to @GraceNote 's comment: You can add #howtoask to point to that specific point where they explain. Like this. –  Trufa Jun 8 '11 at 18:15
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Also: Your accounts should automatically be associated, as long as you use the same openid account to log in. See this answer to merge your existing accounts. –  fretje Jun 8 '11 at 18:23
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Dude, a year on here and you still don't know about Meta? –  Justin Morgan Jun 8 '11 at 19:45
    
@Grace Note. I think we should agree that we both are correct. That the instructions are listed under the heading "How to ask a question" is inappropriate for the FAQ format. I do know how to ask a question and as the post explains I have done so for over a year. Also, the statement is not worded optimally. It would be optimal to use the term "answered" in this example. This is the word everyone uses when they say, "Hey, Your question is answered, will you please mark it, so I can get my +25!" :P As you know GN, FAQ is supposed to be read in this way; what I did was search for "answered". –  xtian Jun 9 '11 at 14:12
1  
@xtian The optimal term to use is the term used by the system, which is accepted. Calling it "answered" is inaccurate and misleading, your question is "answered" the moment it gets any answers (with at least one upvote, if you go the mechanical route). We use a variety of terms to call it - "If this solved your question"... "If this was the correct answer"... there's a lot of ways to call it. Calling it "answered" because some portion says it that way is faulty when the system has already had a defined term for it, "accepted answer", since its instantiation. –  Grace Note Jun 9 '11 at 14:16
    
@Gracenote: I see you're not one to be outdone. You're right except the format of a FAQ. For such an important topic for the Exchange, it deserves its own header. There the explanation can use several forms of the word (accepted, answered, answers, etc.) while explaining the difference to naive users between "answered" questions and "accepted" answers. IMHO. –  xtian Jun 9 '11 at 14:43
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2 Answers

1 & 2) Error on your part. Accounts can be associated by using the same openid (you can add openids in existing accounts and associate them that way).

3) When your question is migrated and your accounts are linked, the question stays associated with you by being attached to your account on the destination site. What to do when your accounts aren't associated? For now you've lost the question, but there has been some discussion around here about dealing with that more gracefully in the future.

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I've ended up with several user accounts (stackoverflow, superuser, mathematics, drupal, etc...). Are these accounts intentionally separate? Or is this an error on my part?

This is intentional; your reputation on a topic is specific to that topic. Because you may know a lot about programming does not mean you're an expert astronomer at http://astronomy.stackexchange.com

I think its not my error since at superuser I had to add a new user account, when I was already logged in at stackexchange (when I clicked through on my migrated question).

See above answer. Accounts are specific to each site.

The migrated question is not listed in my new account profile, and back at my stackexchange user account the question is listed in my profile, but registers no answers, while there are actually two in the migrated version. The net result of all this is I am unable to mark the question answered since my migrated question has no outlined checkmark. How do I mark my migrated question answered?

Once you create an account on the target site -- assuming you used a common credential (read: email) shared with all your other Stack Exchange accounts -- you will automatically assume ownership of the migrated question.

If that does not happen, email us at team@stackexchange.com with relevant URLs and we'll take a look.

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